Marketing in sheep’s clothing

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Marketing has such a poor reputation that it now has to pretend to be customer service. And it makes me hopping mad. For example . . . I got a letter from Spectrum, my internet provider, that said “Important information about your account.” Inside, a generic offer to upgrade my service. My doctor’s office used … Continued

Google chat support shows how intelligence and stupidity can coexist

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I used Google’s chat support. The result was infuriating, because the support person didn’t listen. Humans doing support need to listen and use context — and you’d think algorithms could help with that, especially at Google. Here’s what’s happening. I just set up a new web site for my nonprofit, wellnesscampaign.org. The next step is … Continued

UPS and its customers are slaves of its technology

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UPS has the information about customers, locations, and shipments to be an amazing leader in customer experience (CX). It has the people, devices, and bar codes to turn the Internet of Things — of packages — into an artificially intelligent engine for customer delight. But based on my experience, UPS is the slave, not the master, … Continued

Dropbox buries the lede

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Dropbox got hacked a while back. So the company emailed affected users — and hid the news. Burying the lede* is counterproductive; it just makes people work harder to find out the truth. Good writers get to the bad news quickly and frankly, then move on. Here’s what happened: In 2012, somebody stole 68 million Dropbox usernames and … Continued

All customer service failures have one cause: broken promises

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All brands and businesses make promises. They promise low prices, fast service, or no hassles. Sometimes they fail to deliver on those promises. Customer service failure is about broken promises. When people get upset, it’s not because products or services are objectively bad. They get upset because of broken promises. Parents who buy their kids a $3.99 … Continued

Comcast customer service transformation, in Philadelphia Magazine

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When you read about corporate transformations, be wary. Reporters love to tell these stories, because they humanize companies. We love to read them. But they’re stories, which is not the same thing as truth. Take this article about about how Comcast is transforming its customer experience, “Comcast Knows How Much You Hate Them,” by Richard Rys, in … Continued